Week 3 Big Sky FCS Football Game Breakdowns

Week 3 Big Sky Conference Game Breakdowns

The Big Sky Conference had a great second week last weekend; two teams, Northern Arizona and Sacramento State got highlight wins against FBS competition. Southern Utah also played very well against Pac-12 opponent, California. This week, Eastern Washington and Idaho State receive bye weeks while Sacramento State and Northern Colorado play each other in a non-conference game. Last week, Montana had a chance to measure the Big Sky Conference against the Southern Conference as they played Appalachian State. They played well but left Boone with a loss. This week the Big Sky Conference will play two very good teams from the Southland, McNeese State and Stephen F. Austin. Look for great games against these opponents.


UC Davis @ South Dakota State, Saturday 3:00

UC Davis has a very talented team. They sit at 1-1 against competition that are tough measures. They played D-II Azusa Pacific in week one and then played San Jose State from the FBS in week two. This week UC Davis will get to measure themselves against a more comparable team. Quarterback Randy Wright played well against SJSU but threw two interceptions. Those mistakes must be corrected if they want to win in Brookings next week. South Dakota State is a solid team from the Missouri Valley and plays tough at home. I expect a close game, but I predict UC Davis will be unable to keep up with the Jackrabbit offense.

Projected Score: South Dakota State 34, UC Davis 21


#17 Montana vs. Liberty, Saturday 3:30

Montana played Appalachian State tough last weekend but it wasn’t enough to come away with a win. This week they will play the Liberty Flames from the Big South Conference. Grizzly running back Dan Moore had a huge game against Appalachian State with 238 all-purpose yards. I expect Montana to run all over Liberty and control the ball. I expect Liberty to make a solid effort and challenge Montana. However, winning in Missoula is a tough task--Montana wins convincingly.

Projected Score: Montana 38, Liberty 17


#4 Montana State vs. #21 Stephen F. Austin, Saturday 3:35

This game will be a very interesting game to watch. Montana State was a powerful team last year and they are riding on that past season performance to get their #4 ranking. In my opinion, they have really underachieved the past two weeks. Sure they are 2-0, but they’ve played Chadron State and Drake and Drake was winning at halftime! This game could really give Montana State a scare. Stephen F. Austin is a pretty good team from the Southland and you can bet they will be ready to play come game-time. This game might be the game that wakes up Montana State. I predict they win in a squeaker.

Projected Score: Montana State 31, Stephen F. Austin 30


Portland State @ Washington, Saturday 4:00

Portland State threw two interceptions in the third quarter, which led to 10 points for North Dakota last week. Portland State must limit those costly turnovers if they want to pull of the upset at Washington. Honestly, they have the talent to beat the Huskies. Washington is 1-1 with a very unimpressive win against San Diego State and a blowout loss to LSU. The Vikings racked up 515 total yards of offense last week. If they continue to be that powerful, they might have a chance. However, the defense is what concerns me. North Dakota torched the Vikings through the air last week for 294 yards and six TDs. That performance could be repeated by the Huskies this week.

Projected Score: Washington 45, Portland State 17


Northern Colorado @ Sacramento State, Saturday 5:05

Northern Colorado got some confidence last week against a sub-D1 opponent. However, this week they will run into Sacramento State who is coming off a big win against Colorado. Expect an amped up Hornet team to put away Northern Colorado quick.

Projected Score: Sacramento State 42, Northern Colorado 10


Cal Poly @ Wyoming, Saturday 6:00

Col Poly got some much-needed rest last week in preparation of this game against Wyoming. Wyoming is 0-2 with losses coming at the hands of Texas and Toledo, but by no means is this game impossible for Cal Poly to win. Cal Poly will need to control the ball and keep it on the ground in order to come away with a win here. Wyoming’s run defense is not the best and Cal Poly will definitely challenge them. The major factor will be if Cal Poly can stop Wyoming’s air attack. If they can they win; if they can’t, they lose. I expect a close game, but in the end the Cowboys win.

Projected Score: Wyoming 23, Cal Poly 22


Northern Arizona vs. Fort Lewis, Saturday 7:05

After pulling off a great win against UNLV last week, Northern Arizona will get some of its’ kinks out against sub-D1 opponent, Fort Lewis. Expect nothing less than a blowout here. Watch for quarterback Chase Cartwright and running back Zach Bauman to light up the scoreboard early.

Projected Score: Northern Arizona 56, Fort Lewis 3


North Dakota @ San Diego State, Saturday 8:00

North Dakota got a good win last week against Portland State and will be carrying a lot of momentum into this matchup against San Diego State. Back-up quarterback Marcus Hendrickson has filled in nicely for injured Braden Hansen. Hendrickson threw for 295 yards and six TDs against Portland State last week. If he can repeat that success against San Diego State, not only will North Dakota beat San Diego State, but he will also have won the starting quarterback job. I am not too concerned about the offensive production from North Dakota in this game, but defensively I’m not sure if they have what it takes to stop the Aztecs.

Projected Score: San Diego State 42, North Dakota 24


Southern Utah vs. New Mexico Highlands, Saturday 8:00

Southern Utah played respectively against Pac-12 opponent California last week. This week they will have no trouble putting points on New Mexico Highlands. Expect a huge game from quarterback Brad Sorensen as the Thunderbirds come away with a blowout victory against a sub-D1 opponent.

Projected Score: Southern Utah 63, New Mexico Highlands 10


Weber State vs. McNeese State, Saturday 8:00

Weber State needs a win. They’ve played two straight FBS opponents and have played well against that higher-level competition; however, this week it will again be tough to come out with a victory. McNeese State is a great program from the Southland Conference. If they are going to beat McNeese State, the offense will need to perform much better than it did last week against BYU. I truly believe Weber State will play tough, but in the end I see McNeese State taking this game by a touchdown.

Projected Score: McNeese State 35, Weber State 28


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